IANS goofs up in story, calls Modi ‘Bakhchod’

Photo courtesy:

In a story which appeared on September 12, the Indo-Asian News Service (IANS) wrote about the government of India approving a new pro-farmer scheme. It reported that the scheme which allowed private players to procure crop produce at remunerative prices was approved at a Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi.

However, while referring to the Prime Minister, the story stated that the meeting was chaired by “Prime Minister Narendra Bakhchod Modi”, reports Newslaundry.

The story was pulled down with an hour of its publication after an advisory was issues stating that the story was being withdrawn and a substitute story would be issued. The editors of IANS were asked to watch out against the publication of the story.

The updated story was released at 6.52 pm last night. It carries a disclaimer along with its headline, which states: “(Lead, Supersedes earlier version)”. The updated version of the story is on IANS‘ website.

As per Newslaundry, the oversight has kicked up quite a storm inside the IANS newsroom. An internal probe has been ordered. So far, the agency has suspended the reporter who filed the story with immediate effect pending an investigation, while a show-cause notice has been issued to the editor concerned.

Below is the statement of IANS managing Editor Hardev Sanotra after Newslaundry reached out to him for a comment regarding the withdrawal of the story and confirmation about the reporter’s suspension :

IANS deeply regrets the wholly inadvertent incursion of an unparliamentary reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi in one of its reports yesterday.

The error is unacceptable and unconscionable. As soon as it was discovered, the report was pulled off from the wires and a corrected story issued.

Meanwhile, the reporter concerned has been suspended with immediate effect pending an urgent ongoing investigation. A show-cause notice has also been issued to the concerned editor.

IANS has always strived to uphold the values of accuracy, objectivity and rigour in its reportage and remains committed to the highest norms of journalistic ethics and excellence.

But anyone who is seriously associated with the media knows only too well that inadvertent mistakes, however egregious, can and sometimes do unfortunately take place. This being one such instance, perhaps the first in over 25 year history of our organization.

We apologise profoundly to our subscribers, readers and the Hon’ble Prime Minister for the error and assure them of our continued endeavour to produce the objective, accurate and high quality reportage.

The story filed by any reporter at IANS passes through at least three to four editorial gates. First it goes to a sub-editor, and then to an associate editor. If the story looks important to sub-editor/senior-editor, then the story is forwarded to a senior editor.

Many newsmakers at different organizations are in dilemma of how could this happen despite the editorial layers through which a copy usually goes before finally put out on the web for other media outlets to pick up.

Click to comment
To Top